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# Please beta test my game!

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### #1xDan  Members   -  Reputation: 194

Posted 14 January 2011 - 06:29 AM

Hello!

Please beta test my game, "Puzzle Moppet". It's a kind of block pushing puzzle game.
Available for Windows and Linux!

Looky here: http://garnetgames.com

Features:
- 18 levels
- several block types... crates, elevators, ice blocks, exploding blocks, balloons...
- puzzles ranging in difficulty from stupidly easy to rather hard

Any feedback at all is much appreciated, although feature and gameplay wise I probably won't change much at this late stage. Any bug reports are especially appreciated (you can find the game's log files in the executable directory). If shaders don't work you can turn them off with the config app.

Also any opinions on the level difficulty curve would be interesting. It's a hard thing for me to judge since all levels are etched into my brain!

(and is the game at all fun or worth playing!?)

Thanks!

### #2scgames  Members   -  Reputation: 2073

Posted 14 January 2011 - 12:50 PM

Tried it - everything worked fine :) Here's my feedback (some of this stuff might seem picky, but I'm assuming the more feedback the better...).

First, a few things I thought could be improved:

- Starting in fullscreen doesn't make for the best user experience, IMO. I'd start in windowed mode, and then allow the player to switch to fullscreen if they like. (Or maybe start with a 'select video mode' screen the first time the game is launched.)
- There didn't seem to be any way to click through the intro. This is just my opinion, but my own feeling is that a game should generally be 'responsive' in some way at all times so that the user is always in control to some degree or another (although I'm sure it'd be easy to find a lot of games that went against that). As for how to address it, you could just have a 'press any key to skip' message, for example.
- It'd be nice if you could restart a level without opening the in-game menu. (Maybe there's a keyboard shortcut for this, but I didn't see a list of controls anywhere.)
- IMO, the game could use more polish. (I can provide specifics if needed, but basically I'm just talking about the usual stuff like configurable controls, menus, etc. If that stuff was there and I missed it, my apologies. Oh, and I did see the configuration app, but IMO those settings should be available via in-game menus.)
- The price seems a little high (although if it were a little more polished, I'd happily pay about half that for the game).

And lastly, my biggest complaint: the 'you are playing the trial version' message that pops up periodically. I know you have to limit the trial version somehow, but IMO that's not a good way to do it, and just speaking for myself, I wouldn't buy a game that used that method just on general principle. Other options of course would be to provide a limited number of levels or a limited amount of total play time, either of which would be much, much better than the pop-up message.

Note however that this is only my opinion. Others may feel differently about it.

Everything else is positive. The gameplay is easy to understand, the control scheme is fluid and intuitive, and the puzzles seem just about right difficulty-wise. And yes, it's definitely 'fun and worth playing' :) If some of the above issues were addressed, it's definitely a game I'd consider buying.

You stated that you probably wouldn't change anything feature- and gameplay-wise. I certainly wouldn't make any changes to the gameplay. I'm not sure what 'features' encompasses, but if making changes of any sort is still an option, I'd spend a little more time on the development and try to polish things up a bit if I were you. Although we all like to believe that gameplay is of primary importance, the fact is, people do respond to things like usability, presentation, 'principle of least surprise', and those sorts of things. If the game itself were only so-so, I probably wouldn't bother saying any of these things. But since the game itself is very high quality, I think you could really benefit from bringing the rest of the game up to the same standards (and would probably sell a lot more copies also, I would guess).

Again though, the above is all just my opinion. In any case, congrats on a great game, and best of luck with it.

### #3xDan  Members   -  Reputation: 194

Posted 14 January 2011 - 04:41 PM

Thanks for the great feedback jyk! The more the better, indeed

Regarding polish, certainly most games have all fancy menus, profile systems.. I've just been taking so long over this game that I need to cut it down and try and sell *something*. Maybe I'm just a very slow coder, but I can imagine doing all those sort of things could take me several more months. I'm already at 14 months when I intended to finish the game in 6!

So I may well try to sell it without doing much more on it. Perhaps I'll do a low profile launch in a few discreet parts of the internet and see what the reception is.

### #18SriLumpa  Members   -  Reputation: 198

Posted 17 March 2011 - 03:58 PM

Thanks again for the Linux version.
I don't know if it is because I upgraded my system, or you changed your distribution, but now it "just works" here.

My remarks (other than that, it's a very nice game):
- Like someone said, the background noise is annoying
- The first level where you are on your own was, for me, a bit hard. And much harder than the next ones (in the trial) where new fun mechanism are usable. This could make a few potential users abandon the game
- It would be nice to be able to make the score display at the end "accelerable" by the user (like dialogs in console Japanese rpgs for example)
- The camera that repositions itself when you respawn is confusing
- If the level rating calculation is not too complicated, and you don't want to keep mystery about it, I would find it good to see what I could have done to get a better rating
- At the end I am sent to a "buy" page but it seems this is not available yet, and the price is not shown (maybe you haven't decided yet)

### #19xDan  Members   -  Reputation: 194

Posted 17 March 2011 - 04:27 PM

Thanks guys I love the Deus Ex sound track, certainly something like that. I'm looking through musicloops right now. I have been through some stuff there before, but there's such a lot, it's hard sifting through it all.

@SriLumpa,

eeek, thanks for reporting the website thing, I think a recent update broke something... anyway I've fixed that page and it's showing now.

> The camera that repositions itself when you respawn is confusing
hmm.. I could save the camera angle the player had at the time the state is saved. Or alternatively use the angle the player had before hitting undo...

> I would find it good to see what I could have done to get a better rating
the rating is simply the sum of all pushes/elevator moves, undos and deaths. A lower total being better.
Maybe I could have the total sum displayed... and e.g. "Complete in a total of X or less for a perfect score"... (or instead of "perfect", state the amount needed to go one better rating than that the player achieved..)

I agree with all your other points too, I'll look into fixing them. The ".Configuration" thing from before is still sitting on my TODO list as well... Thanks again

### #20nemebean  Members   -  Reputation: 154

Posted 17 March 2011 - 05:10 PM

I'm looking through musicloops right now. I have been through some stuff there before, but there's such a lot, it's hard sifting through it all.

Yeah, I spent a lot of time listening to samples before I found the ones I liked, but I find music in games to be very important so it was worth it to me. One piece of advice I'll give you is that if you find a song that's close but not quite what you want, check if the composer has done anything else. That's ultimately how I found the track I used, and it can narrow down your options pretty effectively.

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